• MLWA 7

Inslee extends face covering requirement for businesses statewide and halts county advancements

- Olympia, WA

Gov. Jay Inslee and Sec. of Health John Wiesman today announced a statewide requirement for businesses to require face coverings of all employees and customers. Under this proclamation, businesses may not serve any customer, services or goods, if they do not comply with the state-wide face covering order.

The extension comes in response to growing case counts in counties across the state, and after last week’s proclamation mandating the same requirement of businesses in Yakima County.

“We’re doing this because of a spike in cases of COVID-19 all over the state,” Inslee said. “The better we can protect ourselves from the virus, the better we can avoid repeating some of the painful measures we had to take in the spring to shutdown the economy.” “The trends we are seeing in our communities and across the country are concerning and should make all of us stand to attention,” Wiesman said. “We must redouble our efforts to keep our physical distance, wear our face coverings and limit the number of people we see each week.”

Wearing facial coverings, along with adhering to physical distancing, is one of the most effective ways of stopping the spread of COVID-19. Recent surveys show that more Washingtonians are wearing face coverings every day. In less than a month in Yakima, the percentage of people wearing masks went from one-third to two-thirds of the population. Trends like this will help in slowing the spread and allow for the eventual reopening of economies. Modified Phase 1

However, as counties progress through the different phases, some residents of counties in an earlier phase travel to neighboring counties for services. This travel puts residents at a higher risk of bringing COVID-19 out of their communities.

To contain the potential spread of the virus from these movements, the Department of Health will be working with local officials t